Thursday, June 11, 2009

In Times of Turmoil the Christian Knows......

We are living in religious, social, political, and probably personal turmoil. Fortunately, Isaiah 26:3 gives us these comforting words; ‘Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.’

Here are some things that the Christian whose ‘mind is fixed’, who ‘stays the course’, or ‘who perseveres’ in keeping their thoughts stayed on the Lord knows:

I know my redeemer liveth. Job 19:25
What would be the point of trusting in the ideology of a dead philosopher? The Redeemer of the Christian lives eternally. He has power of death for Himself and for those who believe in Him.

I know Jesus is the Christ. John 4:42
Christians need look no further for their salvation.

I know all things work together for good to them that love the Lord and are called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28
How hard it is to see this with our eyes when facing turmoil. Matthew Henry explains it this way.
‘That is good for the saints which does their souls good. Every providence tends to the spiritual good of those that love God; in breaking them off from sin, bringing them nearer to God, weaning them from the world, and fitting them for heaven.’
The good may not be that the event itself works out for good, although it often does. There will always be good in events that draw us closer to the God of our Salvation.

I know that if our earthly house is dissolved, we have an eternal home with God.
2 Corinthians 5:1
Based on God’s abilities, we have a secure future in heaven. We will have health for eternity. We can lay up treasures now for that bright future.

I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. 2 Timothy 1:12b
God Almighty who created all things is able to keep and sustain all things.

I know believers are sons of God. When He appears we shall be like Him. 1 John 3:2
Christians have been adopted by the King of all kings.

We have passed from death to life because we love the brethren. 1 John 3:14 God gives His children love for the brethren. Like God’s love, it is unconditional. (This does not mean we approve of or accept immoral behavior. It means we love the brethren regardless. Of course, how much easier it is to love those who are of like mind and are in fellowship with God.)
In facing the turmoil or storms of life, first consider the things that you do know regarding the character of God and His care for His children. Then obey Philippians 4:8 which says, ‘Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

This will help you to keep your thoughts and actions in harmony with each other.
This will help you have perfect peace in your own heart.
Your life may encourage non-believers to reflect on how it is that you have peace in the turmoil of our times.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Frivolity - AKA Stupid Self-indulgence

Does a Life of Frivolity Lead to Hell?
By Barbara Henderson

Frivolity – unbecoming levity of disposition – the act of being frivolous – aka stupid self-indulgence
Frivolous – lack of seriousness

From the moment of conception to the moment of physical death, every human being lives under the curse of death. The body is bound to die, whether it is sucked out of the womb before it is born, or lives to be very old. Death is the way of all the earth. (Joshua 23:14, 1 Kings 2:2)

It is pretty much a no brainer that what happens in between the beginning of life and the end of life does matter. It matters while we live, and it really matters after we die. The decisions we make are all serious decisions, even the smallest decisions.

To the frivolous at heart, nothing is serious, and trivial things are important. They have a flippant attitude that ignores the gravity of their situation. They are living on death row here on earth, yet they scoff at the path to eternal life. They take nothing seriously except their own egos and passions.

The frivolous at heart defy authority. In fact, their lifelong passion is to do whatever is considered outside the realm of old fashioned correct and right behavior. The heart of their problem is rebellion. They are living a life of frivolity. There are people of all ages who live their lives as though continuing the same rebellious behavior of their teen years will keep them youthful. How many forty, fifty, and even sixty year olds still live their lives for weekends of drunkenness?

Television shows in general establish characters who refuse to grow up as normal and even enviable. The characters live their lives as though they were fifteen to seventeen years old. They still make the same mistakes they made as children; they spend their time doing the same silly things, only as older people who are not answerable to their parents. This behavior is done both in situation comedies and dramas. No one on television is ever in a faithful and fulfilling marriage. Christian faith never enters into anything except in a negative way. No one ever winds up really satisfied or content with the life they live.

Sadly, this behavior is what is going on in the lives of many people. I don’t know if television is just mimicking society, or if society is being led by television. Probably both. Regardless, there are many real people refusing to grow up and face reality.

The reality is this. ‘And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment.’ Hebrews 9:27

There will be no lightheartedness or frivolity on judgment day.
There will be no one doubting the gravity of their situation.
No one will be flippantly defying God on that day.
Stupid self-indulgence will have come to a bitter and final end.

The way to avoid disaster on judgment day is simple repentance today.
Repentance is to be sorry for sinful conduct; to be so sorry that one turns from that conduct and begins a new course of personal action.

The first action is:
Believe on the Lord Jesus and thou shall be saved. (Acts 16:31)
The second action is:
Be baptized as a symbol of having turned from old ways to the ways of Christ. (Acts 10:48)
The third action is:
Do the things of Christ. (Luke 6:46) In other words, take your commitment to Christ seriously. (This does not ‘earn’ salvation for salvation is by grace through faith. Ephesians 2:8 It does show your commitment to Christ.)

It is easy to look at the great sin around us and justify the small sins in our own lives.
This is frivolous behavior for the Christian.
Christians are to do the things Christ says to do.
Christians living a life doing the things Christ taught us in the Bible stand out as different from those living a life of frivolity (aka stupid self-indulgence).

Matthew 5:13-16 says:
13. Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.
14. Ye are the lighty of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
15. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick: and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
16. Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

The silly self-indulgent really don’t have time to listen to what Christians have to say. They are too busy working at ‘having fun’, and ‘staying young’.
They do occasionally have time to watch what a Christian does.
Be sure that you are living Matthew 5:16. ‘Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.’